COVID-19 has had catastrophic effects on the unemployment rate in Australia, bringing it up to 6,2%. To answer to the problem and encourage businesses to take on new employees, the Australian government has created a lifeline called the JobMaker Hiring Credit Scheme. Businesses will be paid a subsidy in return for hiring young Australians between the ages of 16 and 35, with the aim of providing 45,000 new jobs.
Businesses stand to make up to $10,000 annually if they are eligible for the scheme, depending on the age group of the new employee.
If the new employee is aged 16 to 29, businesses can receive up to $10,400 per year
If the new employee is aged 30 to 35, businesses can receive up to $5,200 per year
The employees also need to be hired within a certain window to be eligible. The window backdates from 7 October 2020 through to 6 October 2021. From the 1st of February 2021, employees can start claiming payments in arrears every three months for a total of 12 months. So, how do you know if you’re eligible?
Determining Your Eligibility For JobMaker Credit
Registrations are already open for businesses to apply for the JobMaker Hiring Credit Scheme. To be eligible as a business, there are some basic guidelines. According to the Australian Tax Office website, meeting the following conditions will stipulate whether an employer is eligible:
Have you registered for the JobMaker Hiring Credit scheme?
Does your business meet one of the following criteria? - You either operate a business in Australia - You are a not-for-profit organisation operating in Australia - You are a deductible gift recipient (DGR) endorsed either as a public fund or for a public fund you operated under the Overseas Aid Gift Deductibility Scheme (DGR item 9.1.1) or for developed country relief (DGR item 9.1.2)
Do you hold an Australian business number (ABN)?
Are you registered for pay as you go (PAYG) withholding?
Can you show that you have not claimed JobKeeper payments for a fortnight that started during the JobMaker period?
Are you up to date with income tax and GST returns and have been for the two years up to the end of the JobMaker period for which you are claiming?
Do you satisfy the payroll increase and the headcount increase conditions?
Do you satisfy reporting requirements, including up to date Single Touch Payroll (STP) reporting?
Can you show that you do not belong to one of the ineligible employer categories?
If you meet all the above requirements, you could be eligible. Have you registered yet? Let us help you. As a registered tax agent, we can help guide you through the process.
Some other updates that might affect you or your business are as follows:
Extension WFH Short Cut Method Extension
The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is offering small businesses an extension to apply the work-from-home shortcut method of calculating tax deductions, until 30 June 2021. They can calculate their working from home expenses for the following tax periods:
1 March to 30 June 2020 in 2019-20 tax return
1 July 2020 to 30 June 2021 in 2020-21 tax return
Small businesses can claim a deduction of 80 cents for each hour worked from home, provided they were working at a full, normal capacity. All deductible running expenses would also be covered by the extension.
Do you know about the new ATO Independence guidelines regarding SMSF Audits?
The new Independence Guide says that auditing firms will need to overcome several hurdles when performing in-house audits of self-managed super funds (SMSFs). This is as per the requirements of the restructured APES 110 Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (including Independence Standards) (the Code).
The new guide requires that accountants and auditors perform separately, we can deliver both SMSF services and we have independent auditors to complete the audit function. This will apply to audits completed after 1 July 2021.
Liquidation Regulation 1 Jan 2021 Especially After Job Keeper
The Corporations Amendment (Corporate Insolvency Reforms) Act 2020 has introduced changes to the Insolvency Practice Rules (Corporations) 2016. These changes affect:
The requirements involved in becoming registered as a liquidator
The requirements to remain registered
They also introduce a new type of registered liquidator who can practise only as a restructuring practitioner for a company or for a restructuring plan
The full details can be found here.
If any of the above is unclear, please contact us for a consultation and we will help guide you through these changes and amendments, while helping you make the most for your business.